6.6/10
28,492
70 user 22 critic

*batteries not included (1987)

Apartment block tenants seek the aid of alien mechanical life-forms to save their building from demolition.

Director:

Matthew Robbins

Writers:

Mick Garris (story by), Brad Bird (screenplay by) | 3 more credits »
Reviews
Popularity
4,792 ( 308)

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ON DISC
2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Hume Cronyn ... Frank Riley
Jessica Tandy ... Faye Riley
Frank McRae ... Harry Noble
Elizabeth Peña ... Marisa Esteval
Michael Carmine ... Carlos
Dennis Boutsikaris ... Mason Baylor
Tom Aldredge ... Sid Hogenson
Jane Hoffman Jane Hoffman ... Muriel Hogenson
John DiSanti ... Gus
John Pankow ... Kovacs
MacIntyre Dixon MacIntyre Dixon ... DeWitt
Michael Greene ... Lacey
Doris Belack ... Mrs. Thompson
Wendy Schaal ... Pamela
José Angel Santana José Angel Santana ... Goon #1 (as José Santana)
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Storyline

A group of tenants in an apartment block are being forced to move out so that it can be demolished. The tenants are reluctant to move, so the developers hire a local gang to 'persuade' them to leave. Fortunately, visiting alien mechanical life-forms come to town. When they befriend the tenants, the aliens use their extraterrestrial abilities to defeat the developers. Written by Rob Hartill

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Five ordinary people needed a miracle. Then one night, Faye Riley left the window open.


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

18 December 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

*batteries not included See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,326,530, 20 December 1987, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$32,945,797

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$65,088,797
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The line, "We bring good things to life " was the hook for General Electric consumer products ads. "Don't leave home without it," was used in ads for American Express Credit Cards. See more »

Goofs

When the fire starts, we see it spread down into the room with all the balloons. However you can clearly see that the fire is burning on ropes, which are being dangled down to make it seem as though the fire's spreading. See more »

Quotes

Frank Riley: [Faye is feeding nails to the Fix-Its as if they were pigeons] No more pigeons hun. It's time to stop. I said stop that!
Faye Riley: Frank!
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the opening credits, pictures of young Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy are shown. This includes their actual wedding photo, since the actors (who often play a married couple on stage or in the movies) were married for decades. See more »

Alternate Versions

When aired on KTLA in 1991, the following scenes were omitted: When Frank attempts to give Faye her medicine; Before Frank asks for somebody to help them, he breaks a vace and kicks a chair; a scene of Carlos and his gang planning; Frank and Faye are reading the newspaper and while one of the spaceships pours them coffee, Faye asks what ever happened to General Eisehower; Harry searches his room for his whistle; While Marissa, Hector and his friends hold a fiesta in the apartment, Mason sits outside and drinks. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Cinema Snob: Nekromantik (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Let's Have Another Cup of Coffee
(uncredited)
Written by Irving Berlin
Performed by Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

A charming little movie
18 July 2001 | by laguy310See all my reviews

While I realize that this movie has been blasted as being one of Spielberg's low points, it does have it's strongpoints.

First and foremost, this movie contains stronger characters (and places more emphasis on them) than most popcorn movies of today. If only a movie like TOMB RAIDER or MUMMY RETURNS (or even CATS & DOGS) were to pay as much attention to characterization!

The sci-fi elements, while cheesy, actually serve a purpose, and work quite well within the framework of the story. It's essentially a feature-length episode of "AMAZING STORIES."

Ultimately, this is a small movie with a small scope and intimate feel. Is it dated? Yes. Is it perfect? No. But it is a charming little movie that might be worth a second look.


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